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Volleyball Battles But Falls in Three Sets at No. 22 Michigan
Mallory McIntyre led UMBC with 13 assists vs. Michigan
ANN ARBOR, Mich. – The UMBC volleyball team had a set point in the third set but could not hold off a late rally by No. 22-ranked Michigan, as the Wolverines swept the Retrievers, 3-0 (25-9, 25-16, 26-24), Saturday morning on the second day of the Adidas/Michigan Challenge at Cliff Keen Arena.
“We showed improvement in every set today,” said head coach Ian Blanchard. “We represented ourselves and UMBC very well and proved to everyone that we can compete with anyone and anywhere if we play with energy and passion.”
Freshman outside hitter Sherelle Walker (New Freedom, Pa./Susquehannock) led UMBC (2-5) with a match-best 10 kills while junior libero Ali Goc (Oshawa, Ontario/R.S. McLaughlin) led the Retrievers with 16 digs.
For Michigan (6-0), freshman outside Kelly Murphy notched 10 kills and junior libero Ally Sabol had a team-best 14 digs.
The first set started out even with the two squads trading the lead twice and tying at two. The hosts then claimed four consecutive points to jump put to a 6-2 lead, one they would not give up. After Michigan built a six-point lead, 9-3, UMBC rallied to cut the lead to four twice, the second coming at 11-7. But with the score at 16-9, the Wolverines won the final nine points to take the opening set, 25-9.
After an early tie in set two, Michigan won six straight points to claim an 8-2 lead. The Retrievers responded though and cut the lead to just two, 10-8, following an attack error. The Black and Gold could not get any closer, however, as the Wolverines build a set-high nine-point cushion, 22-13, and held off a late rally to take a 2-0 lead with a 25-16 set win.
Despite going down two sets to none, the Retrievers did not go away and battled Michigan in a third set which featured seven ties. After neither team could pull away in the early going, UMBC took control of the set with a 6-1 lead to take the lead 13-8. Michigan then inched back into the set and leveled the frame at 18, but the Retrievers ran off the next three points to take a 21-18 lead on a kill by Walker. Once again Michigan rallied and knotted the set at 22 and 23, before holding off a set point for the Retrievers and then taking the final three points for the win.
”It’s a disappointing result in the end considering the set point,” Blanchard said. “But I’m very proud of the effort we gave because we played with enthusiasm, joy, and most importantly intensity.”
UMBC concludes play in the Adidas/Michigan Challenge this evening when the squad takes on Central Michigan at 5 p.m.
- This was the first volleyball contest between UMBC and Michigan.
- The Retrievers are now 2-3 in matches that end in three sets in 2012.
- UMBC is now 0-4 all-time against Big Ten opponents (0-1 vs. Michigan; 0-1 vs. Ohio State; 0-2 vs. Penn State).
- Sherelle Walker has notched ten or more kills in four of the Retrievers’ seven contests this season.